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UB-Youngstown Game Analysis

UB 80, Youngstown 72

How UB Won: The Bulls fed the Penguins a steady diet of Javon McCrea and Mitchell Watt and undersized Youngstown State couldn't handle UB's inside forces. Youngstown kept UB honest by raining threes, 14 of them in all. But the Bulls stuck to their game plan and shot 50 percent, winning via the surer shot.

Turning Point: It was a one-point game when UB went on a 7-0 run that ended with just over 5 minutes left. Tony Watson launched it with a three, Watt added two free throws and McCrea hit a bucket off a rebound.

Player of the Game: McCrea was a man amongst boys, particularly in the first half, when he responded to a pair of early turnovers by scoring 17 of his career-high-tying 29 points. He also had 13 rebounds.

Player of the Game II: Watt struck for a career-high 20 points to go with 10 boards and four blocks. He'ss now second all-time on UB'ss blocks list.

Unsung Hero: Zach Filzen, UB'ss leading scorer, subordinated himself to the game plan, taking just 8 shots, as Youngstown defended him with vigor. He still added 11 points, went 3 of 4 from beyond the arc and chipped in with four assists. It's nice having seniors.

Stat of the Game: Youngstown shot 40 percent from three, and 34 percent overall.

He Said It: Reggie Witherspoon on McCrea's two early turnovers: "I think he realizes that if he does that it stresses me out. And he doesn't want me to have a stress-free existence."

In the House: There were 1,611 at The Alum.

What It Means: It's a 6-2 start for the Bulls.

Next Up: The Bulls are off until their Dec. 20 game at BYU. It's a long way to travel. But at least they won't run into Jimmer Fredette.

-- Bob DiCesare

Live blog: Canisuis at St. Bonaventure

Final: St. Bonaventure 81, Canisius 62

Second half

8:33 left: Bona leads, 61-45. Plenty of whistles at this point, including a double techinical on Andrew Nicholson and Chris Manhertz after they got tangled under the basket.

15:50 left: Bona, 45-32. The Bonnies are starting to pull away with good shot selection and solid rebounding. Matthew Wright became the first Bonnie to hit double-scoring figures with 11 points.

Halftime: Bona, 36-25. It wasn't exactly a spectacular first half for either team. Nothing in particular stood out. The Bonnies shot a bit better, rebounded a bit better and took care of the ball to build its lead. Harold Washington has 11 points for Canisius while Chris Johnson and Matt Wright lead Bona with six apeice. Davenport has a shoulder injury and will not return for Bona in the second half.

First half

3;43 left: Bona, 29-21. The Bonnies are starting to create offense off its defense. However seiro guard Michael Davenport is being attended to by trainers. After fighting for a loose rebound along the sideline in front of the Bona bench, he was injured. Davenport is walking into the locker room with ice on his left shoulder.

7:48 left: Bona, 23-16. Tied at 12 the Bonnies went on an 11-4 run. Matthew Wright and Eric Mosley hit three-pointers while Andrew Nicholson had a three-point play to give the Bonnies some space from the Griffs.

11:43 left: Bona, 12-10. It's a fast game so far, though not necessarily pretty. Neither team seems to have settled in to their game yet.

15:57 left: Canisius, 6-2. The Griffs have come out quick while the Bonnies missed their first three shots from the field. Matthew Wright was fouled on his three-point attempt and will shoot three out of the official timeout.

Olean -- No time to catch our breath after the St. Bonaventure women trounced Buffalo, 76-45 in the doubleheader opener.

It's time for the oldest rivalry in the Big 4 as the Bonnies host Canisius in the men's game. Bona is 3-4 with three of its four losses coming after the Bonnies had second half leads. The Golden Griffins are 1-6.

--- Amy Moritz

UB vs. Youngstown St. Live

Live blog: Buffalo at St. Bonaventure

Final: Bona 76, Buffalo 45. Jessica Jenkins finished with 19 points as the Bonnies improved to 8-1 

Second half:

11:58 left: Bona, 54-25. The Bonnies have 22 points off turnovers, 24 points in the paint and 20 from the bench. The Bulls have no assists on their eight baskets.

15:46 left: Bona, 44-22. Megan Van Tatenhove will be on the bench this half for Bona after hitting her head while diving for a loose ball midway through the first. It was a sloppy start after the break with both teams shooting 25 percent.

Halftime: Bona, 40-18. Buffalo had closed the gap to six points, 24-18, on a bucket by Teresa Semalulu, but the Bonnies went on a 16-0 run to close out the half, fuled by three straight three-pointers and a three-point play.

First half:

3:49 left: Bona, 24-15. The game took a sloppy turn in that segment.

7:22 left: Bona, 24-14. The Bonies have 10 points off turnovers and 14 points in the paint.

11:53 left: Bona, 17-10. After a cold start, the Bonnies found their groove and are shooting 63.6 percent (7 of 11) from the field. Brittany Hedderson has four points for Buffalo, giving her 1,000 for her career.

15:04 left: Buffalo, 8-7. The Bonnies started the game with turnovers on their first four possessions but Megan Van Tatenhove got points in the paint to help the home team's cause.


OLEAN -- Big 4 doubleheader Saturday kicks off with a women's matchup between Buffalo and St. Bonaventure in the Reilly Center. Both teams are 2-0 in the Big 4 this season but the Bonnies have dominated the regional rankings for the past few years. Bona has won 13 straight games over Big 4 opponents, last losing a local rivarly game on Nov. 14, 2006 when Niagara earned a 71-64 win at the Gallagher Center. Bona is 9-1 all-time against Buffalo in the Reilly Center.

The Bulls are 3-6 overall and coming off a 62-57 win over Canisius in Alumni Arena. Senior Brittany Hedderson is four points shy of the 1,000-point mark. The key for UB has been its rebounding -- it collected 54 in the win oer Canisius with four players in double-figures in reboudning for the first time in program history.

Fun fact: Buffalo sophomore forward Rachel Bantelman is from Olean and a graduate of Olean High School. On the sponsorship boards along the baseline is an advertisement from her father, Joe Bantleman, who is the agency principal for Erie Insurance.

--- Amy Moritz

Canisius-South Dakota Game Analysis

South Dakota 67, Canisius 55

How South Dakota Won: Coyotes coach Dave Boots figured the statute of limitations was about to expire on his team's poor three-point shooting. History told him they were much better than a 26-percent team from beyond the arc. And the breakthrough came at the Koessler Center. SD cashed 10 of 18 threes, demoralizing the Griffs time and again. On the Canisius end, the Griffs don't have the horses to absorb the loss of Gaby Belardo (back).

Player of the Game: Louie Krogman couldn't look more unassuming. Bring him to Martin Luther King Park for a pickup game and he might well be the last player selected. And what a mistake that would be. He nearly triple=doubled the Griffs with 18 points, nine assists and eight rebounds. He also went 5 of 10 from 1three not counting the 25-footer he swished after a foul away from the ball.

Stat of the Game: Canisius had 15 offensive rebounds but only seven second-chance points.

Stat of the Game II: Krogman's backcourt mate, Charlie Westbrook, had three of South Dakota's six blocks.

They Said It: "No one is a viable option right now other than Gaby Belardo, but he's not here. So we have to try to work things out." -- Canisius coach Tom Parrotta on his team's offensive challenges.

In the House: There were just 802 in the KAC. It'll be a different story next year when transfers Freddy Asprilla, Isaac Sosa and Jordan Heath join the mix. Message to Griff fans tired of being patient: Be patient.

Status Update: The Griffs plan to sit Belardo again Saturday at St. Bonaventure to give his back extra time to heal.

-- Bob DiCesare

Canisius vs. South Dakota Live

UB-Niagara Game Analysis

UB 82, Niagara 74

Why UB Won: The Bulls should have won. They're bigger. They have more depth and experience. But Niagara never lays down in a rivalry game, particularly on its home floor, and it made the Bulls work right to the finish. Full-court pressure got Niagara back into the game after trailing by as many as 16 in the first half.

Play of the Game: There were 54 seconds left and UB led by three when Dave Barnett buried a long three from up top. The Bulls finally had some breathing room.

Player of the Game: Titus Robinson came off the bench to give UB 12 points, three rebounds, two assists, a block and a steal in 22 minutes. He was 5 of 6 from the field and 2 of 2 from the line.

Player of the Game II: Niagara's post woes could be solved if Scooter Gillette plays with this kind of ferocity on a regular basis. He had a career-high 12 points to go with five rebounds.

Stat of the Game I: Niagara scoring leader Juan'ya Green finished with 16 but was just 4 of 20 from the field, including 0 of 9 from three.

Stat of the Game II: UB won the boards, 47-34, helping it to overcome 18 turnovers and eight Niagara steals.

Stat of the Game III: Niagara was 7 of 27 from behind the arc.

They Said It: Joe Mihalich on rebounds that eluded Niagara down the stretch: "Charron Fisher, 6-3 1/2, 15 pounds overweight, can't wait to get his pizza after the game, he would have had that rebound. It just wouldn't have mattered. He goes and gets that rebound. We need that attitude."

In the House: There were 2,061 at the Taps.

Next Up: UB entertains Youngstown State Saturday night while Niagara travels to Hartford.

-- Bob DiCesare

UB @ Niagara Live

Live blog: Canisius at Buffalo women's basketball

Final: Buffalo 62, Canisius 57. 

Second half

3:48 left: Buffalo, 53-51. We have ourselves a ballgame. Jamie Ruttle scored seven straight points for Canisius -- on two free throws, a three-pointer and a jumper -- to keep the Griffs in the game. But the Bulls are still getting points off the glass and ahve three players with double-figure rebounds.

7:39 left: Buffalo, 42-40. The Bulls are dominating the glass, 46-34, including 20 offensive rebounds. If Buffalo could shoot a bit better (18 of 56 for 32.1 percent for the game) it would be in control of this game.

11:37 left: Buffalo, 40-35. The Bulls are on a 10-2 run fueled by good play in the low post and solid defense which is turning missed shots and turnovers into fastbreak scoring opportunities.

15:50 left: Canisius, 33-30. A three-pointer from Brittany Hedderson opened the half for the Bulls to tie the game, 28-28. The teams exchagned baskets with Jamie Ruttle hitting a three-pointer to give the Griffs the edge into the first official timeout of the half.


Canisius, 28-25. Allison Braun leads the Griffs with nine points while Jamie Ruttle has eight. Canisius is shooting just 28.1 percent (9 for 32) but have four three-pointers giving them the scoring edge. Brittany Hedderson has nine points for the Bulls who are shooting just 29.4 percent ( 10 of 34). They have the edge in post play with 10 points in the paint, 10 second-chance points and a 27-21 edge in rebounds, including 10 on the offensive end.

First half

2:00 left: Canisius, 25-21. Same pace. The game is full of missed shots (both teams are shooting below 30 percent) and 14 total turnovers.

6:36 left: Canisius, 21-17. The Griffs finally started hitting shots, including another three-pointer from Jmaie Ruttle and one for Allison Braun in a 16-6 run. Hurting the Bulls are turnovers -- six of them in total which have resulted in six points for the Griffs.

11:23 left: Buffalo, 13-9. Four free throws from Ashley Durham have helped Canisiuis accumulate some points. The Griffs are 6 for 6 from the line but just 1 for 13 (7.7 percent) from the field. The Bulls have control of the post with eight points in the paint and a 12-10 edge n rebounds.

15:58 left: Buffalo, 7-3. Brittany Hedderson opened the scoring with a three-pointer for the Bulls and has five points. Jamie Ruttle's three-pointer put Canisius on the board. The Griffs are shooting just 10 poercent (1 for 10) while the Bulls are 3 for 6 (50 percent).


Big 4 women's hoops continues in Alumni Arena as the University at Buffalo hosts Canisius. The Bulls (2-6) opened the season with a win over Niagara but have lost five straight games, thanks in large part to a brutal schedule that included road losses to Syracuse, Dayton and No. 2 Conneticut.

The Golden Griffins (3-3) meanwhile have won two straight. This marks their second Big 4 matchup of the season as the Griffs opened with a home loss to St. Bonaventure. Freshman Kayla Hoohuli was named the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Rookie of the Week after averaging 12.5 points and 6.0 rebounds in two wins for Canisius.

Expectations for this game? First one to 40 points wins. Then again, I called a high scoring game between the Canisiuis and Iona men's basketball teams last week and was way off base. Still, anticipate a slightly sloppy and low-scoring game as both teams try to find their groove before league play kicks in.

--- Amy Moritz

College Hoops/Football Chat

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About Campus Watch

Bob Dicesare

Bob DiCesare

Western New York native Bob DiCesare covers UB football, Big 4 basketball and writes an occasional column. He still holds a grudge against Chris Ford who, he's convinced, cost St. Bonaventure the 1970 NCAA basketball championship.

@TBNDicesare |

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz, a native of Lockport, has covered colleges for The Buffalo News since 1999. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism/mass communication from St. Bonaventure University and a master’s degree in humanities from the University at Buffalo. An endurance athlete, she has completed several triathlons, half marathons and marathons.

@amymoritz |